“After the Revolution. Greece by the first photographers (19th-early 20th c.)”. Digital photography exhibition by PIOP

“After the Revolution. Greece by the first photographers (19th-early 20th c.)”. Digital photography exhibition by PIOP

On the occasion of the International Day for Monuments and Sites (18/4), the Piraeus Bank Group Cultural Foundation (PIOP) presents the digital photography exhibition titled “After the Revolution. Greece by the first photographers (19th-early 20th c.)”. In five units, the exhibition comprises more than 120 photographs, signed and anonymous, which date from 1839 to 1920. The aim is to present the monuments and sites of Greece as they were immortalized through the lens of the first foreign and Greek photogaphers, from William James Stillman to Filippos Margaritis and from the Romaidis brothers to Frédéric Boissonnas. The material selected here, after extensive research, comes from the Ministry of Culture and Sports, foundations, cultural entities, private collections and archives, while open access repositories abroad have been useful as well.  

Before the 1821 Revolution, Greece had been known through the engravings that depicted actual monuments as well as imaginary landscapes. In the early 19th century, the travellers who arrived here were looking to find these images, inspired by Neoclassicism and Philhellenism. Photography as the evolution of the technique of heliography, was officially presented by Louis Daguerre in 1839 and named daguerreotype. The new medium quickly arrived in Greece, since Pierre-Gaspard Gustave Joly de Lotbinière took his first picture of the Propylaia in October 1839.

Initially, the first photographers from abroad as well as the first Greeks who learned the art from them sought to depict the same themes. The monuments in Athens and Attica were the first to be photographed, while photography was later linked with archaeology and its work, documenting the monuments and the first extensive excavations. Finally,  as the Greek state grew and more and more lands became were depicted, visitors have a chance to follow the photographers on their journeys and discover the selected sites through their eyes.

The digital exhibition is in two languages (Greek, English) and features a wealth of background material (biographical information, photography terms, annotations), available on personal computer, tablet and mobile phone. The exhibition is also fully accessible for people with impaired hearing and features a video with audio description of selected photographs for people with impaired vision.

You can visit the exhibition free of charge here
For the audio description, press here
For contributors and copyright holders press here

Piraeus Bank Group Cultural Foundation
6 Angelou Geronta Street, Athens 105 58
Τ.: 210 3256922 | www.piop.gr